WHAT NEW INNOVATIONS, TECHNOLOGY, PROGRAMS, OR RESOURCES HAVE YOU RECENTLY DEVELOPED THAT THE DISTILLING INDUSTRY CAN BENEFIT FROM IN 2020?
In 2019, the Distilled Spirits Council of the United States (DISCUS) launched Spirits United.org, a grassroots platform designed to mobilize the spirits industry and its consumers on key policy issues. The Spirits United platform mobilizes everyone in the spirits industry, hospitality professionals and consumers, and provides advocates with an easy-to-use website to weigh in on issues that matter to them. Spirits United advocates are dedicated to educating lawmakers on the best policies for the distilled spirits industry so that responsible adult consumers can enjoy spirits when, where and how they want. DISCUS is partnering with a number of industry trade associations and guilds on Spirits United to broaden its grassroots reach in the states, including: the American Distilling Institute (ADI), TIPS, Texas Whiskey Association (TXWA), Texas Distilled Spirits Association (TDSA), Kentucky Distillers’ Association (KDA), the Tennessee Distillers Guild (TNDG), the New York State Distillers Guild (NYSDG), the Distilled Spirits Council of Vermont (DSCV), Michigan Licensed Beverage Association (MLBA) and Techniques for Alcohol Management (TAM). With the help of our partners, Spirits United has more than 17,000 advocates. Spirits United is already having a real impact. Through the Spirits United platform, industry advocates drove more than 65,000 communications to Congress urging lawmakers to pass the Craft Beverage Modernization and Tax Reform Act (CBMTRA). At the end of 2019, Congress passed a one year extension of CBMTRA and we are working to make it permanent. Spirits United is also mobilizing advocates on removing tariffs on distilled spirits imposed by the U.S. and EU by telling the Trump Administration that our industry needs #ToastsNotTariffs. A strong commitment to responsibility is the foundation of Spirits United. Through Spirits United’s social media content and information on its site, spirits advocates will be encouraged to join industry efforts to prevent underage drinking and drunk driving and to promote the responsible consumption of beverage alcohol. Chris Swonger
President & CEO, Distilled Spirits Council of the United States (DISCUS) and Responsibility.org
ISC Barrels officially rolled out four toasted barrels in our Small Batch Series. Named after the characteristics they impart, these barrels are; Smoke 1, Spice 1, Sweet 1 and Sweet 2. Toasted barrels are made over a rotating oak fire following a time and temperature combination. Our research demonstrates that precise control over toasting time and temperature is crucial for guaranteed repeatability and predictability. For this reason, we developed our barrel profiling technology, which offers diverse, definable flavor profiles that are repeatable. Our new toasted barrels within the Small Batch Series are finished with a Char 1 to comply with the legal definition of bourbon. The development of our new Small Batch Toasted Barrels was a long time in the making. We started with an experiment that consisted of more than 120 barrels over 15 different profiles and two wood species. Every 12 months samples were collected for chemical and sensory analysis. Samples from the test barrels were analyzed in our company-owned GC-MS (Gas Chromatography Mass Spectrometry) machine at ISCO Laboratory in Napa, California. A trained tasting panel conducted the sensory analysis at our Research Lab in Lebanon, KY. After three years, our team identified four core barrels to add to our Small Batch Series. We are confident in the performance of these barrels to impart a specific characteristic across multiple mash bills while also creating depth and layered complexity in the spirit. Smoke 1: Sweet smoke notes that show up quickly during maturation but gradually develop a rich smoky character that adds depth to the spirit. Spice 1: Autumn inspired spice notes to accent the estery characters of the spirit with moderate intensity. Sweet 1: A barrel that builds with intensity over time showcasing the natural grains of the spirit against a backdrop of sweet oak. Sweet 2: The French Oak tannins add a textural depth and sweetness that transforms the spirit with color and flavor. If you have questions about toasted barrels, please reach out to Chad Spalding or Jeff LaHue with questions or to request a consultation on toasted barrels. Teri Smith
Marketing & Communications Director, Independent Stave Company
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The magazine for craft distillers and their fans.